Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Immunization and Hedging of Post Retirement Income Annuity Products
Received: 17 January 2017 / Revised: 5 March 2017 / Accepted: 13 March 2017 / Published: 16 March 2017
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Designing post retirement benefits requires access to appropriate investment instruments to manage the interest rate and longevity risks. Post retirement benefits are increasingly taken as a form of income benefit, either as a pension or an annuity. Pension funds and life insurers offer
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Designing post retirement benefits requires access to appropriate investment instruments to manage the interest rate and longevity risks. Post retirement benefits are increasingly taken as a form of income benefit, either as a pension or an annuity. Pension funds and life insurers offer annuities generating long term liabilities linked to longevity. Risk management of life annuity portfolios for interest rate risks is well developed but the incorporation of longevity risk has received limited attention. We develop an immunization approach and a delta-gamma based hedging approach to manage the risks of adverse portfolio surplus using stochastic models for mortality and interest rates. We compare and assess the immunization and hedge effectiveness of fixed-income coupon bonds, annuity bonds, as well as longevity bonds, using simulations of the portfolio surplus for an annuity portfolio and a range of risk measures including value-at-risk. We show how fixed-income annuity bonds can more effectively match cash flows and provide additional hedge effectiveness over coupon bonds. Longevity bonds, including deferred longevity bonds, reduce risk significantly compared to coupon and annuity bonds, reflecting the long duration of the typical life annuity and the exposure to longevity risk. Longevity bonds are shown to be effective in immunizing surplus over short and long horizons. Delta gamma hedging is generally only effective over short horizons. The results of the paper have implications for how providers of post retirement income benefit streams can manage risks in demanding conditions where innovation in investment markets can support new products and increase the product range.